Saturday, November 10, 2018

Lots of gratitude.........................

















thanks Jess

I'm usually asleep before...............


........the Late Show starts, but this is certainly watchable:



    via

On talent.................................


"If you ever find that you're the most talented person in the room, you need to find another room."

-Austin Kleon

Use it, or lose it............................


When was the last time you committed something to memory?  Now that we have 4G phones we don't need to remember anything, really, yet we're also aware this is a small disaster.  Our short- and long-term memories suffer for it.
     Merely doing what one has always done, such as a specialist does, strengthens existing networks but builds no new ones in the brain.  It also means that short- and medium-term memory are used less and less.  The lesson - an intuitive one only recently supported by scientific research - is simple:  if you do not use your memory, it will atrophy.   If you don't visit new places where you are required to orientate yourself by, for example, learning where shops are, finding the way back to your hotel, ore even remembering where you parked your car, then you'll gradually lose even this basic skill.  And it does help to think of memory as a skill.

-Robert Twigger,  micro mastery:  Learn Small, Learn Fast, and Unlock Your Potential to Achieve Anything


As someone once said (repeatedly), just do it....




"Don't think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it's good or bad, whether they love it or hate it.  While they are deciding, make even more art."

-Andy Warhol

image via

Fluidity............................


In Plutarch's Life of Theseus, he describes how the ship of Theseus, an Athenian hero, was preserved by the people of Athens in battle-ready condition for many centuries.  Each time a board decayed, it would be replaced until eventually every stick of wood in it had been replaced.  Plutarch asks:  Is it still the ship of Theseus, or it it now a new one? ...
     Our understanding of what is is just a snapshot - an ephemeral opinion.  The universe is in a constant state of change.  Our nails grow and are cut and keep growing.  New skin replaces dead skin.  Old memories are replaced by new memories.  Are we still the same people?  Are the people around us the same?  Nothing is exempt from this fluidity, not even the things we hold most sacred.

-Ryan Holiday,  from this day's entry in The Daily Stoic

Fifty years ago..........................


The Beatles...............................................The Fool On The Hill

Friday, November 9, 2018

As we used to say.................


.............................back at the fraternity house, "all things in moderation - including moderation."

I have abandoned that libertarian project, however, because I have come to abandon ideology. This essay is an invitation for you to do likewise — to walk out of the “clean and well-lit prison of one idea.” Ideology encourages dodgy reasoning due to what psychologists call “motivated cognition,” which is the act of deciding what you want to believe and using your reasoning power, with all its might, to get you there. Worse, it encourages fanaticism, disregard for social outcomes, and invites irresolvable philosophical disputes. It also threatens social pluralism — which is to say, it threatens freedom.

The better alternative is not moral relativism. The better alternative is moderation, a commodity that is rapidly disappearing in political life, with dangerous consequences for the American republic.

-Jerry Taylor, from his essay The Alternative to Ideology

via

Tonight was (is) pizza night................




      via

awkward mold...........................


As for our celebrated lawgivers, who have cast us in our present awkward mold, you may be sure that they have acted to serve their interests and not ours. Witness all our political, civil, and religious institutions — examine them thoroughly: unless I am very much mistaken, you will see how, through the ages, the human race has been broken to the halter that a handful of rascals were itching to impose. Watch out for the fellow who talks about putting things in order! Putting things in order always means getting other people under your control.

-Denis Diderot in 1796

Titles.................................


     Through the Dillys he also connected with the radical politician John Wilkes, who was in prison at King's Bench, where he had been remanded after being expelled from the House of Commons for his views.  Rush visited him in prison, for a dinner party attended by more than a dozen of Wilkes's friends in his two-room cell (which included its own library).  Rush was impressed that Wilkes was "an enthusiast for AMERICAN Liberty" and was intrigued by his advice about the need to build a new nation that challenged class distinctions.  "If you can but preserve an equality among one another,"  Wilkes told him, "you will always be free in spite of everything.  Titles are the bane of an infant country."

-Stephen Fried,  Rush:  Revolution, Madness & The Visionary Doctor Who Became A Founding Father

in liberty alone...................





"From infancy I was taught to love humanity and liberty.  Inquiry and experience have since confirmed by reverence for the lessons then given me, by convincing me more fully of their truth and excellence.  Benevolence towards mankind excites wishes for their welfare, and such wished endear the means of fulfilling them.  Those can be found in liberty alone, and therefore her sacred cause ought  to be espoused by every man, on every occasion, to the utmost of his power."

-John Dickinson, from Letters from a Farmer, Letter 1.  Circa 1767

Fifty years ago......................


The Beatles.....................................Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Pondering this......................



the high ground.............................


Management prefers peace over justice.   Firing off harsh memos will not score points and refusing to cooperate with a co-worker can be a ticket to oblivion.
     People who act like spoiled stars are more likely to be regarded as spoiled than catered to as stars.  As political speechwriter Vic Gold once put it, "The squeaky wheel is sometimes replaced."  The wisest strategy in any workplace dispute is to seize the high ground by being as reasonable as possible.
     Let the other person play prima donna.  You may have some short-term losses but you'll gain over the long term, especially as a person.  To paraphrase an old joke, you don't want to win the rat race if it means becoming a rat.

-Michael Wade,  All I Said Was:  What Every Supervisor, Employee, and Team Should Know to Avoid Insults, Lawsuits, and the Six O'Clock News

Not sure this yet has been decided.....


     In many of the medical texts Rush was reading, there was  basic debate about the role of the physician.  Was it primarily to help nature take its course, or was the purpose of physic for the doctor to try to wrestle nature to the ground, to be its master, not its servant?

-Stephen Fried, Rush:  Revolution, Madness & The Visionary Doctor Who Became A Founding Father

Fifty years ago.............................


The Beatles..............................................................Glass Onion



Here's another clue for you all,  the walrus was Paul

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Measure..................................



     Your outcomes are a lagging measure of your habits.  Your net worth is a lagging measure of your financial habits. Your weight is a lagging measure of your eating habits.  Your knowledge is a lagging measure of your learning habits.  Your clutter is a lagging measure of your cleaning habits.  You get what you repeat.


-James Clear,  Atomic Habits:  Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results

Fifty years ago..................


The Beatles....................................................I Am The Walrus

Monday, November 5, 2018

Time......................................


“As time goes on, you’ll understand. What lasts, lasts; what doesn’t, doesn’t. Time solves most things. And what time can’t solve, you have to solve yourself.”


-Haruki Murakami

via

Routines....................................


The worst thing a day job does is take time away from you, but it makes up for that by giving you a daily routine in which you can schedule a regular time for your creative pursuits.  Establishing and keeping a routine can be even more important that having a lot of time.  Inertia is the death of creativity.  You have to stay in the groove.  When you get out of the groove, you start to dread the work, because you know it's going to suck for a while - it's going to suck until you get back in the flow.

The solution is really simple:  Figure out what time you can carve out, what time you can steal, and stick to your routine.  Do the work every day, no matter what.  No holidays, no sick days.  Don't stop.  What you'll probably find is that the corollary to Parkinson's Law is usually true:  Work gets done in the time available.

-Austin Kleon,  Steal Like An Artist:  10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative

Useful..............................


     Invoking the story of David, Davies implored his students to "imbibe and cherish a public spirit.  Serve your generation.  Live not for your selves, but the public.  Be the servants of the Church;  the servants of your Country;  the servants of all."  He exhorted them to "esteem yourselves" not but how much "more happy, honourable and important" you can become but by how much "more useful you are!"

-Stephen Fried,  Rush:  Revolution, Madness & The Visionary Doctor Who Became A Founding Father, as he channels the Reverend Samuel Davies in his 1760 address to the graduating class of eleven at the College of New Jersey (now Princeton).

When tomorrow is today..............

Max Frost and The Troopers....The Shape of Things to Come



There's a new sun rising up angry in the sky
There's a new voice crying but not afraid to die
Let the old world make believe it's blind and deaf and dumb
But nothing can change the shape of things to come
There are changes lying ahead on every road
There are new thoughts ready and waiting to explode
When tomorrow is today, the bells will toll for some
But nothing can change the shape of things to come
The future's coming on sweet and strong
And no-one's gonna hold it back for long
There are new dreams crowding out old realities
There's revolution sweeping in like a fresh new breeze
Let the old world make believe it's blind and deaf and dumb
But nothing can change the shape of things 
Nothing can change the shape of things 
Nothing can change the shape of things
Nothing can change the shape of things
To come


Fifty years ago.....................


The Beatles.......................................................Hello, Goodbye

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Featherbeds.................................


"People seem to want the government to create a giant featherbed for them, so they don’t have to worry about anything at all."

-Scott Sumner, from this post on the financing of commercial developers and moral hazards

via

What am I doing?...........................


     Asking yourself, What am I doing? will help you overcome the habit of wanting to complete things quickly.  Smile to yourself and say, Washing this dish is the most important job in my life.  When you ask, What am I doing?, reflect deeply on the question.  If your thoughts are carrying you away, you need mindfulness to intervene.  When you are really there, washing the dishes can be a deep and enjoyable experience.  But if you wash them while thinking about other things, you are wasting your time, and probably not washing the dishes well either.  If you are not there, even if you wash 84,000 dishes, you work will be without merit.
     Emperor Wu asked Bodhidharma, the founder of Zen Buddhism in China, how much merit he had earned by building temples all over the country.  Bodhidharma said, "None whatsoever."  But if you wash one dish in mindfulness, if you build one small temple while dwelling deeply in the present moment - not wanting to be anywhere else, not caring about fame or recognition - the merit from that act will be boundless, and you will feel very happy.  Ask yourself, What am I doing? often.  When your thinking is not carrying you away and you do things in mindfulness, you will be happy and a resource for many others.

-Thich Nhat Hanh,  The Heart of the Buddha's Teaching:  Transforming Suffering into Peace, Joy, and Liberation

as long as.................................


"Wherever you go you will find your teacher, as long as you have the eyes to see and the ears to hear."

-Shunryu Suzuki

Fifty years ago..............................


The Beatles..........................................Magical Mystery Tour



Released in November of 1967, this album, and this song, was a major part of the sound track for 1968.

As a "criterion for judgement"................


.............................."Does it spark Joy?" is a pretty good one.